The Controversial Art of Using Your Voice.

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When will we start acting like humans rather than one of Instagram’s chess pieces?

I recently published a blog post on why I no longer show the BTS of my photos (which can be found here). There’s not many things that surprise me about Instagram anymore, but the response was something that was the complete opposite of what I was expecting. I have to admit that I thought that some people were going to come at me with pitchforks, hunting me down, chanting all the reasons why I was wrong. But that didn’t happen. Instead, I got a tonne of messages and re-shares, saying I have put into words exactly what they’re thinking and I was really brave to talk about something so controversial.

 I have never been one to stay quiet about my opinions, even if it’s one that could potentially ‘rock the boat’ a bit. I’m not scared to talk about what I’m really feeling, how something has made me feel and to be frank about my thoughts even if some people won’t like it. We’re human, we’re not all going to agree and we’re all going to have different opinions on something, even if you choose to stay quiet about it.

The fact of the matter is, Instagram is a game.

It’s one huge, curated fantasy game that we all willingly play and love. We all complain about the algorithms, but we still play the game. My curated feed isn’t real life. It never has been. But my captions and my stories and my blog posts always have been, and always will be. I’ll be the first the admit that I play the Instagram game, but that doesn’t mean I don’t break the rules.

It really astounds me that on Instagram it’s considered ‘brave’ or ‘inspirational’ to use your voice and speak up about topics that you don’t agree with or things that you’re passionate about. I’ve never felt brave or inspirational when I press publish on a blog post or put something up in my stories. For me, anyone who has a large following, or any amount of following at all, should be talking about things that they have an opinion on.

Opinions make us unique, human, and generate discussions which people can learn from. This shouldn’t be something that should be applauded, it should just be normal.

But it isn’t normal, and that’s part of the game. You’re not meant to have opinions on things. Did you forget that you were supposed to only show the good parts of your life? You’re just meant to show this staged reality and only talk about things that your followers are interested in and absolutely nothing else. If you begin to talk about other things that matter to you, you will lose followers and GOD FORBID that happens.  You can argue with me on this, but I know it’s true. When I announced that I was going to be an ambassador for The Cup Effect, I lost 200 followers. In the aftermath of my rebrand, I’ve probably lost about 400 followers, and I’m still counting. I have nothing against the people who unfollowed me, they can do what they like because I’m so beyond caring about numbers. But it’s just rather interesting to me that people are calling for influencers to be more real and talk about things that actually matter, but as soon as they do, they lose followers. And that’s the tea for today.

My question is, when will it stop being considered controversial or brave to speak up?

When will it start being normal? When will we start acting like humans rather than one of Instagram’s chess pieces? We all have voices and they all have something to say, so we should be using them. And it shouldn’t be considered controversial.

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